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This week we open with more highlights from the Richard Margolis numismatic library, a price list of Schulman catalogs, four new books, a periodical, updates from the Newman Numismatic Portal, and more.
Other topics this week include F.C.C. Boyd, S. W. Chubbuck, William Guild, the Dexter 1804 Dollar collector's mark, Congressional medals, coin finds, Henry the Pretender, Decimal Day, a smallpox medal, and Irish gunmoney.
To learn more about the Bank Mint at St. Petersburg, Diamond Anniversary edition of the Red Book, Lithuanian coinage, Conder tokens, Joe Levine, the J. Pierpont Morgan collection, Roman terracotta theater tokens, the Gregorian Tunnels, the gold half-semissis of Constantius II (not really), Russell "Noodles" Smith, and the great Super Bowl rings heist, read on. Have a great week, everyone!
Editor, The E-Sylum
Here are additional highlights from the March Kolbe & Fanning sale of the numismatic library of dealer Richard Margolis. -Editor
Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers will be offering at auction highlights from the Richard E. Margolis Library of international numismatic literature on Saturday, March 6, 2021. The Margolis Library covers the coins, medals and paper money of all times and places, but is especially important for works on European and American coins of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The 539-lot sale features books, auction catalogues and periodicals, as well as separate sections on numismatic art and archival materials.
Some highlights of the sale include:
Howard R. Engel of Richard Stockley Books is offering a fixed price list of Schulman auction catalogs. -Editor
My, how time flies. The Red Book is celebrating 75 years of publication with its new Diamond Anniversary edition. Here's the announcement from Whitman. -Editor
Whitman Publishing announces that the Diamond Anniversary 75th edition of the coin-collecting hobby’s annual Guide Book of United States Coins (popularly known as the "Red Book") will debut April 6, 2021. The new volume includes completely updated prices and auction data reflecting the current market for collectible U.S. coins, along with historical information and guidance on how to build valuable collections. The Red Book can be pre-ordered online (including at Whitman.com) in several formats, and after April 6 will be available from booksellers and hobby shops nationwide.
Coin collectors have used the Red Book to value their collections since the 1st edition was published in 1946. Today, Senior Editor Jeff Garrett coordinates the book’s support network of more than 100 professional coin dealers and researchers. He credits the Red Book’s 75 years of success to teamwork: "Whitman relies on a nationwide group of active retailers, auctioneers, historians, and other specialists with decades of experience. Thanks to their expertise we have the most current and accurate market information and recent scholarship for every coin series."
Dzmitry Huletski of the European Humanities University in Minsk published two new numismatic books in English early this year; both are on Lithuanian numismatics. The books are $45 each and they will be offered soon by Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers LLC. -Editor
Dear Reader, Your attention is called to the second edition of the catalog of the Lithuanian coins minted within the reigns of Alexander Jagiellon and Sigismund the Old (1495 – 1536). The first edition included the coins of only one denomination, half-groats. This book covers all the coins minted in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania within the defined period. The book presents approximately twice as many coins as were published in the first edition.
The second volume published by Dzmitry Huletski is the ninth volume of the Rus', Lithuania, Horde: Journal of Numismatics and Sigillography. The book costs $45 and will be offered soon by Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers LLC. -Editor
The 9th volume of the research series "Rus’, Lithuania, Horde" is a special volume devoted to the XVI International Numismatic Congress in Warsaw (2022). The volume contains publications and analysis of numismatic and sphragistic findings, as well as academic research and supplementary studies. The series is intended for historians, archeologists, numismatists, sigillographers, and other persons interested in heraldry, economics, and the law of the states of Eastern Europe in the Middle Ages.
In her Chinese Money Matters blog, Helen Wang, Curator of East Asian Money at the British Museum discussed a new review of East Asian Collections in Scotland. Here's an excerpt. -Editor
In 2017, as part of an Ancient Egypt and East Asia National Programme, National Museums of Scotland (NMS) began a review of East Asian collections in Scotland, supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund, delivered by the Museums Association. The completed review East Asian Collections in Scotland (2020) covers 36 organisations, and highlights some of the objects and stories of these collections.
The survey covers three countries: China, Japan and Korea, and all types of objects, including numismatic material. The types of objects are: (1) Works on Paper/Silk/Pith, (2) Metalwork, (3) Cloisonné and Glass, (4) Ceramics, (5) Lacquer, (6) Carved Ivory/Stone/Wood, (7) Textiles, Dress/Embroidery, (8) Fibre/Bamboo/Wooden Structures, (9) Numismatics, (10) Photography, (11) Miscellany. The inclusion of a separate section devoted to numismatics is a very welcome development, the initiative of Dr Qin CAO, now a curator at the NMS, and previously a Future Curator in Asian Numismatics at the British Museum and the Manchester Museum.
The 21st issue of The Journal of East Asian Numismatics (JEAN) has been published. Publisher & Editor-in-Chief Michael Chou penned this Foreword to the issue. -Editor
Our journal team will again work with leading numismatic author and editor Ron Guth on a book about the NC collection. The format will be similar to the 2015 Howard Franklin Bowker book, which was also edited by Ron Guth, Bruce Smith, and Michael Chou. Based on ten years of interviews with the owner of the NC collection, this book will give insight into one of the great collectors of Chinese numismatics and his family.
We have an article on the Smithsonian National Numismatic Collection's report on the digitization of 5,810 Chinese banknotes, which includes 4,500 notes from the collection of Alexander Pogrebetsky, in 1969 directed by Howard F. Bowker to NNC curators Vladimir and Elvira Clain Stefanelli, is extremely interesting.
Bob Steinberg passed along word of the passing of Fort Lee, NJ dealer Jeffrey P. Bergelt. -Editor
If you would like to honor Jeff’s memory--- please make a donation to the food bank in Jeff’s area of New Jersey:
Center for Food Action
192 W. Demarest Ave
Englewood, NJ 07631
Send a check to them directly by mail--and on the memo line write:
In Memory of Jeffrey Bergelt
The latest addition to the Newman Numismatic Portal is The "Conder" Token Collector’s Journal. Project Coordinator Len Augsburger provided the following report. -Editor
Conder Token Journals on Newman Portal
Conder Tokens, also known as 18th Century Provincial Tokens, are a form of privately minted token coinage struck and used during the latter part of the 18th Century and the early part of the 19th Century in England, Anglesey and Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. The Conder Token Collector’s Club (CTCC), formed in 1996, serves as a central point for the research of these trade tokens. With the assistance of president Jeff Rock and the CTCC board, the "Conder" Token Collector’s Journal has been posted on Newman Portal for the years 1996-2017. Note, an author and token index for issue nos. 1-70 (1996-2015), prepared by Dave Jones, is posted under the year 2015.
Link to the "Conder" Token Collector’s Journal on Newman Portal:
Link to the Conder Token Collector’s Club home page:
These are selections from the David Lisot Video Library that feature news and personalities from the world of coin collecting. David has been attending coin conventions since 1972 and began videotaping in 1985. The Newman Numismatic Portal now lists all David’s videos on their website at:
Here's one on the recent Greater Houston Coin Club show. -Editor
Greater Houston Coin Club Sponsors Houston Money Show During COVID Pandemic 2021.
Jack Domurat, Dealer Relations, Houston Money Show,
David Lisot, Interviewer, CoinTelevision.com. January 23, 2021.
One of the first major coin conventions of 2021 was held in Conroe, Texas at the Houston Money Show sponsored by the Greater Houston Coin Club. Jack Domurat of the convention talks about the precautions taken to prevent COVID Virus and the reactions from the dealers and public. He shares about GHCC and why a person would want to belong to a coin club.
An excerpt of the video is available for viewing on the Coin Television YouTube Channel at:
Readers and Numismatic Bibliomania Society members may remember Liz as Elizabeth Hahn, who was appointed Librarian of the American Numismatic Society in 2008 and served as an NBS Board member from 2011-2013 and Vice-President from 2013-2017.
Here's the information on the virtual lecture. -Editor
Julia Casey submitted these biographical notes on F.C.C. Boyd. Thanks! -Editor
F.C.C. Boyd Biographical Details
The entry on John’s website indicates that no 1880 US Census record has been located for the Boyd family. I was able to find this record and it adds legitimacy to Boyd’s statement that his mother was Arabella Sherwood Boyd. Arabella Boyd is shown as 31 years old and the wife of James Boyd (age 34) with children: Thomas S. (age 4), Lizzie F. (age 2) and Ada F. (age 3 months). F.C.C. Boyd would be born a few years later and consequently does not show on this census record.
Steve Roach passed along this article about collector's marks on drawings that relates to last week's vocabulary phrase. Thanks! -Editor
Collectors of Old Master prints and drawings often had hundreds or thousands of works on paper in their collections to keep track of at a time when inventories were painstakingly made by hand in ledger books. As part of this process, a stamp or seal was put on the back of each work of art to identify the owner, sometimes accompanied by a hand-written inventory number. Royal collections were inventoried and documented in the same way, often with a royal wax seal added to the collection number. These marks have been recorded over time and enable scholarly research into the history and provenance of important works on paper. In the absence of old inventory records or royal archives, collectors’ marks can help identify a work of art and can add value if it is determined that the mark is that of a prestigious or royal collection, or from a prominent historic figure.
More on Joe Levine
Paul Montz writes:
Joel Orosz writes:
I have been told that you prize insulting inscriptions on the theory that the more insulting the inscription, the more highly thought of you are by the writer. (Apparently, you've never heard of candor!)
Each to his own - but I do want you to know how greatly I esteem our friendship and the high regard in which I hold your reputation for numismatic knowledge, high ethical standards and personal cleanliness.
I especially admire your decision to privately educate your 9 bastard sons.
Alan V Weinberg writes:
Jeff Kelley writes:
Thanks, everyone. -Editor
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
HENRY JOSEPH LEVINE (1940-2021) (https://www.coinbooks.org/v24/esylum_v24n06a09.html)
Other topics this week include an 1849 Cent in Lucite, and the "Give Nothing, Get Nothing" token. -Editor
Website visitor Kristofer Carlsson would like to obtain an example of the Detroit Mayor's medal discussed in 2011. Below is the earlier entry. Can anyone help? He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Also, does anyone have a copy of the price list? How much was the medal offered for? Thanks. -Editor
Here's another entry from Dick Johnson's Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Terminology. -Editor
Congressional Medal. In America a medal authorized and enacted into law by the Congress of the United States. Usually these have been to honor specific individuals who have made some outstanding contribution to the country or humanity by military or naval valor, by lifesaving, or by their scientific, medical or other accomplishments. There is a large body of medals that are "Congressional medals" but not all mention Congress in the medal's inscription.
Here's another entry from the online draft of John Lupia's book of numismatic biographies. Thanks! This is an excerpt with the full article and bibliography available online. This week's subject is collector S. W. Chubbock. I added an image from the Newman Numismatic Portal of Haseltine's February 28, 1873 sale of Chubbuck's collection. -Editor
Chubbuck, Samuel Winchester (1799-1875), Inventor, Silversmith and Metal Worker, Mechanic, and Numismatist.
He was born on December 24, 1799 in Weston, Vermont, the second of three children of Samuel and Cata Chubbuck. Early on he moved to Eaton, Madison County, New York. He then moved seven miles northwest to Morrisville, Madison County, New York, where from 1817 to 1819 he worked as a silversmith and goldsmith making jewelry. In 1823 at Morrisville he married Nancy Mary Gates (1804-1862). They had six children...
About 1844 he moved to Utica, New York into a residence in Whitesboro Street. He opened a shop at the foot of Genesee Street where he manufactured scientific instruments with a business partner Henry S. Storrs, in the firm of Storrs & Chubbuck. He immediately developed the prototype of the Morse telegraph transmitter in 1844. Sometime in 1860 he moved his shop to Hotel Street, just below the Post Office, and issued a trade token. In 1863 he issued a business script or advertising note valued at three cents postage at his store. (not in Vlack)
The latest article in Harvey Stack's blog series reviews the year 1983, including the J. Pierpont Morgan sale. -Editor
Stack's 1983 auction season continued with our March sale of ancient and world coins as well as a splendid general collection of United States gold, silver and copper coins. The sale contained over 1,300 lots and collectors participated in droves to find items on their want lists. The highlight was a group of U.S. silver dollars that featured 1836 and 1839 Gobrechts, 1851, 1852 and 1858 Liberty Seated pieces, and Carson City dollars from 1871, 1872 and 1873. The market was enthusiastic and we received a large number of mail bids as well as people participating in person.
In the ANS Pocket Change blog February 2, 2021, Jesse Kraft discusses an interesting and unusual method of sharing coin images. -Editor
Every so often, something truly unique enters the American Numismatic Society’s collection. Thanks to a generous donation by Vicken Yegparian, Vice President of Numismatics for Stack’s Bowers Galleries, this took place once again. On the eve of this past Thanksgiving, Vicken reached out to see if the ANS had interest in receiving more than 2,000 plastic slides of various coins. While the basic description may not seem very appealing, both the physical slides and the coins they portrayed proved extremely interesting and quite important.
On the morning of January 7, I entered my office to find two rather large boxes on my desk. They each contained nine (9) double-row red boxes for storing coins in 2" × 2" holders—for a total of 18 boxes! After opening some, it was quickly apparent that the slides were not commercially manufactured. They were produced in the late 1940s by William Guild, of West Newton, Massachusetts, a real estate agent and relatively-unknown coin collector.
Here's a selection of interesting or unusual items I came across in the marketplace this week. Tell us what you think of some of these. -Editor
Roman Terracotta Theater Token with Deers c.2nd cent AD. Size 25 mm. Roman Alexandria Egypt circular shape theater token depicting two deers running (worn out). Provenance: Ex Eldert Bontekoe, Pegasi. Ann Arbor Michigan, USA.
I can't say I was ever familiar with Roman theater tokens. This was once in the stock of dealer Eldert Bontekoe. -Editor
To read the complete lot description, see:
Roman Terracotta Theater Token with Deers c.2nd cent (https://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/98032434_roman-terracotta-theater-token-with-deers-c2nd-cent)
Other topics this week include a countermarked Turkey 20 Para, a 1916 Standing Liberty Quarter, and the Gregorian tunnels Medal. -Editor
Howard Berlin passed along this article from The Times of Israel about the chance find of a soldier. Thanks. -Editor
The coin features an image of the head of the Roman emperor Antonius Pius and was dated to 158–159 CE.
Donald Tzvi Ariel, head of the Israel Antiquities Authority’s Numismatics Department, said that the coin was well-preserved and a rare find.
"This coin joins only eleven such coins from known locations in the National Treasures Department collection. All the coins were found in northern Israel, from Megiddo and Zippori to Tiberias and Arbel," Ariel said.
Arthur Shippee also found this article on a nice find of over 650 silver Roman coins in Turkey. Thanks! great photos. -Editor
Details of a "very special" haul of 651 Roman coins found in the ancient city of Aizanoi in Turkey have been released by researchers behind the discovery.
The silver coins were found in a jug during archeological excavations led by researchers from Pamukkale University, according to a press release from the university.
The ruins of Aizanoi are found in modern day Kutahya province, western Turkey.
Here's an unusual find - half a Roman gold coin. Found via The Explorator newsletter. To subscribe to Explorator, send a blank email message to: email@example.com. -Editor
The discovery of half a gold Roman coin found in Norfolk has been declared as treasure.
The coin was found by Brett Du Cesari on land belonging to Henry Burn on October 13 2018 by a metal detector.
In a February 5th email to clients, Allan Davisson discussed an interesting Henry-the-Pretender Mary Stuart Ryal - lot 185 in their current Auction 40. Here's an excerpt. -Editor
It was an ill-advised marriage—Mary Stuart and Henry Lord Darnley. As the son of Margaret Douglas, granddaughter of Henry VII, Darnley was in the line of succession for the English throne, as was Mary Stuart whose grandmother was a sister of Henry VIII. With Elizabeth on the throne with no children, the Stuarts had strong claim to succeed her—and eventually did with Mary Stuart’s son, James I.
David Pickup submitted this Valentine's Day story about the Italian 500 Lira coin design. Thanks. -Editor
Feeling Romantic? A coin for Valentine’s
This is a beautiful coin. It is not rare but the designs are exceptional. The obverse was designed by an artist called Pietro Giampaoli and shows a young woman in Renaissance dress, surrounded by 19 shields. From lower left the shields are: Genova, Torino, Aosta, Milano, Trento, Venezia, Trieste, Udine, Bologna, Firenze, Ancona, Perugia, Roma, L'Aquila, Napoli, Bari, Potenza, Catanzaro, Sicilia, Cagliari. The last two are hidden behind the bust. The designers’ name is below the portrait.
David Pickup submitted this piece on tomorrow's anniversary of decimalisation. Thanks! -Editor
All change- Decimalisation Anniversary
15 February 2021 is the fiftieth anniversary of Decimal Day in Britain when the new currency system was formally introduced. It was not universally popular as the great British public preferred counting from one to twelve rather stopping at ten. It is arguably simpler to do maths in multiples of twelve rather than ten.
Here's another article on how the London Underground switched to the new decimal coins. Found via News & Notes from the Society of Paper Money Collectors (Volume VI, Number 34, February 9, 2021). -Editor
The move to decimalisation in the UK started 200 years ago, in 1821 when a Parliamentary Committee was set up, although it eventually rejected the proposals. Various attempts were made to change the currency, but it was a report published in 1963 that set the stage for the UK to change its currency at last.
The plans for decimalisation would see the pound retained, as it was a global reserve currency at the time, but the shilling was to be abolished, and the pound subdivided into 100 "new pence" – each worth 2.4 old pence.
Here's another one of John Kraljevich's Black History Month articles on Facebook. This one highlights a fascinating Seattle entrepreneur. -Editor
According to the 1920 census, there were just 2,894 African-Americans in Seattle. They were just 1% of the city’s population.
It’s a fair bet that they all knew Russell "Noodles" Smith.
Noodles was the guy with the Stutz Bearcat, which he sometimes like to drive down to San Diego to vacation.
Emma Hulme of Baldwin’s of St. James’s submitted this account of a vaccination medal in their auction on the 17th March 2021. Thanks. -Editor
A topical medal for the present time
Baldwin’s of St. James’s have held, during the last few years, a number of specialised sales of historical and commemorative medals. Their electronic auction to be held on March 17th is to include a small portrait medal of much significance to the present Covid dilemma. It is a small portrait medal of Edward Jenner (1749–1823), the pioneer of the smallpox vaccination. It was struck in Germany by Friedrich Wilhelm Loos and is dated 1796, the year when it all began when Jenner inoculated his gardener’s son with smallpox taken from a local milkmaid. When, a couple of months later, he was inoculated again, the boy showed no signs of illness and was immune to smallpox. Today, Public Health England might have something to say about such methods! The Royal Jennerian Society, later the National Vaccine Establishment, was founded in 1803.
Here are some additional items in the media this week that may be of interest. -Editor
A coin collection is involved too, but the star of this heist story from ESPN is a cache of Super Bowl rings, stolen in an elaborate burglary back in 2008. Worth a read. -Editor
Murphy finds plenty before he even gets to the 6-foot, solid steel safe: boxes filled with 5-pound bags of beaded gold and silver sitting on tables; sets of plastic trays with tiny drawers, the kind you might use to hold loose screws or bolts on your workbench, only holding gold in different karats; stacks of gold plates on the wall, "about 30 or 40 pounds," Murphy says. He swishes all of it into his barrel.
The robbers move room to room, carefully emptying E.A. Dion's stock. Antique coins. Wedding bands. Necklaces and bracelets. Estimated value for all they take is more than $2 million.
Morgan emerges from an office with bright eyes. "The Super Bowl rings are here!" he says. Murphy is stunned. "What do you mean?"
They aren't locked up, aren't even in a drawer, Morgan says. There are more than 50 of them. Morgan holds one out. "Look, it weighs about 20 pounds!"
To read the complete article, see:
THE GREAT SUPER BOWL RINGS HEIST (https://www.espn.com/espn/feature/story/_/id/30777694/the-true-story-patriots-fan-stole-giants-super-bowl-rings)
This week's Featured Web Site is Marcel Springorum's Irish Gunmoney site.